Farm to Early Care and Education (ECE) is always a joy to see in action. It is often difficult to convey the excitement and impact of getting children involved in gardening with words alone. For this reason, we are very excited to have the opportunity to film and create videos highlighting some of the amazing work that is being done in child care programs in Alabama while allowing providers to tell their own stories.
We hope this newsletter serves as a useful resource for child care providers and those that work with child care providers.
Farm to Early Care and Education does not have to look the same for all child care programs. Some programs may take trips to a local farm, some read books about farming or growing fruit and vegetables, and some may plant seeds in recycled containers and watch them grow on the windowsill. The possibilities for incorporating Farm to ECE in the classroom are endless.
Through our Farm to ECE Learning Collaboratives, we learn from each other about gardening, food and farming education, and local food purchasing. Farm to ECE Learning Collaboratives often include trainings, action periods, and technical assistance from the Farm to ECE trainers.
Encouraging healthy eating habits in early childhood is beneficial for young children as they grow. One of the best ways to promote healthy eating habits to young children is through positive exposure to fruits and vegetables. Introducing new foods to kids can be a difficult task, but there are many ways to make it a fun and positive experience!
Holiday Gifts and Decorations from Your Garden: Creating Holiday Keepsakes with Master Gardener Bionca Lindsey
During the month of December, Ms. Bionca talked about how to create wonderful gifts and decorations from items that can be found in a garden. Ms. Bionca and the participants also did a craft together, creating beautiful bird feeders out of pinecones, peanut butter, and bird seeds!
Farm to early care and education (Farm to ECE) encompasses efforts that bring locally or regionally produced foods into ECE programs using three core strategies: local food sourcing, gardening, and food and agriculture education.